Inspired by conversations on the Food52 Hotline, we're sharing tips and tricks that make navigating all of our kitchens easier and more fun.
Today: The best ways to break down a pineapple, step by step.
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We owe a lot to the first people who stared at the thing we call a pineapple -- those spikes! that skin! that spindly top! -- and figured out that there was some really, really good stuff inside.
Since the gnarly skin and fibrous core have got to go, we've got two ways to tackle our favorite alien-fruit: one that's gadget-free (and yields chunks), and one that uses a pineapple-corer (which yields rounds). Now, go use your pineapple in salads, cocktails, or just eat it plain.
First, rest the pineapple on its side, and lop off the top. We like a good serrated or chef's knife for this process.
Holding the pineapple upright, drag your knife down the side of the fruit, shearing away the tough skin. Rotate the fruit, repeating until all of the skin is cut off. You can trim out those little prickly brown spots, called eyes, if you want. We're lazy.
Now, you can choose your adventure.
1. If you're going for simple chunks, cut the fruit into quarters, length-wise.
Hold one of the sections upright, and drag your knife down the inner side. This will get rid of the tough, fibrous core. Repeat for all of your sections.
Now, slice your sections into the size cubes of your choice!
2. If you're going for whole cored rounds of pineapple, place the skinned fruit back on its side. Slice the pineapple into rounds, as thick as you like.
Using a corer or small cookie cutter, press out the inner core of each round.
What's your favorite way to cook with pineapple? Let us know in the comments!